Sitting between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, on the cusp of South America, is the Central American island of Nicaragua. This is a part of the world that is frequently visited, but it’s only the major nations that generally get a look in. In fact, you probably don’t know of anyone who has traveled to Nicaragua or is planning to travel there, and that’s a shame because this is a pretty amazing place.
But, everyone else’s loss becomes your gain, because there is a load of fantastic reasons to visit Nicaragua right now. This hidden spot of Central America is one that is still relatively unblemished by excessive tourism, and that’s what makes it the ideal place to head to right now! If you want to uncover the charm of this Central American gem, we suggest you check out these awesome things to do when you visit the best-kept secret in the Americas.
Go surfing in San Juan del Sur
It might surprise you to learn that Nicaragua is actually one of the best countries in the world for surfing. In fact, the famed San Juan del Sur beaches have some of the best waves in the world and are hugely popular with surfers. Not only are the beaches stunning, but they also give a unique opportunity to enjoy some of the best surfing opportunities in the world. You can even hire a board and have a lesson, and there are plenty of cheap bars and cool hostels here as well.
This stunning island was formed by two joined volcanoes and is a place of great aesthetic beauty. There is so much you can do here, including hiking, kayaking, and cycling, not to mention the fact that the place is full of healthy eating opportunities as well. Volcano hikes will set you back just $20USD and are well worthwhile, but they will take a while, so leave plenty of time. There are also some cool monkeys here that are really fascinating and mischievous, and give you something else to enjoy as well.
If you are a culture vulture, and you prefer to stay in the more urbanized areas, a visit to New Leon will go down a treat. This used to be the capital of Nicaragua up until the mid-1850s when it was replaced with Managua. Leon is the cultural and intellectual hub of the country, with the National University based there, not to mention loads of museums, art galleries, and churches. A true highlight of any trip to Nicaragua, this is a city full of vibrant culture, and a tremendous food scene to go with it.
Visit the Stone Man
It’s always good to have new experiences, especially ones that are specific to the place you’re visiting. One of the great things you can do as a tourist in Nicaragua is to visit the Stone Man. This guy, Alberto Gutierrez, has been carving symbols and animals into stone for decades – he claimed it started as a message from God to help him kick alcoholism. Alberto will take you into his home and show you his stunning works free of charge – though we’d recommend giving him a donation.
These are just some of the amazing highlights of Nicaragua, and we hope you can see the appeal. This is one of the finest countries in the world to visit, and still a well-kept secret from much of the world. There is a lot natural, scenic beauty here, as well as plenty of interest to keep you occupied. Nicaragua could well become your new favorite vacation destination – discover her today.